First Tracks :: Friday Five


First Tracks :: Friday Five

First tracks of albums are important. Like first lines in a film, and the first sentence of a book, it is what sets the tone and pulls us in, whether its into a story, a plot, or in this case, an entire album. It is the introductory, instrumental and an integral part of the listening experience. First songs are often what I fall for first on an album, and the best of the best stick with me forever.

So, welcome to this week’s Friday Five where I’ll countdown my five favorite first tracks.

And, as a bonus, and because I’m terrible sometimes at choosing, I’ve included a playlist at the end of first tracks curated “for your (listening) pleasure”.

Bonus playlist to follow in later post…

1. Life on a Chain :: Pete Yorn
from the album, musicforthemorningafter

“I was alone,
you were just around the corner from me.”


2. Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels) :: Arcade Fire
from the album, Funeral

“Then I’ll dig a tunnel
from my window to yours,
a tunnel from my window
to yours.”


3. Spark :: Tori Amos
from the album, From the Choirgirl Hotel

“You say you don’t want it,
again and again,
but you don’t really mean it.”


4. Great Big No :: The Lemonheads
from the album, Come On Feel the Lemonheads

“Lover don’t turn your head,
just let me walk away.”


5. Vertigo :: The Libertines
from the album, Up the Bracket

“The rapture of vertigo,
and letting go.
Me myself I was never sure
was it the liquor
or was it my soul?”


11 thoughts on “First Tracks :: Friday Five

  1. I hit play and the first song is good of course, of course it is! I’m learning if it’s Pete Yorn it is probably good. His vocals on this one remind me SO MUCH of someone and I can’t figure out who! I was going to say there’s something about this song that is SO late 90s alternative & a little early 2000s in a perfect way and then I googled the track and it’s from 2001! Looks like I really need to explore this guy’s music.

    I second “The Great Big No” so hard. That song demands so much attention. A little itty bit of me wishes that rest of that album followed suit. Like I could go back in time, play it for the first time and get something a lot more like “The Great Big No” for the rest of the album. Then again, hard track to follow.

    1. Yes, Life on a Chain is from his debut album, the biggest “hit” album from 2001 – radio hits, and all. Its a solid album from start-to-finish, and yes, it is very late 90’s/early 2000’s.

      Great Big No is just so wonderful, isn’t it? And I hear ya/feel ya on the rest of the album. I mean, I love love love the album, but I get it – and I think it would be interesting to hear it all a bit more like that start. The flow from GBN to the next song doesn’t quite work for me…but it is a hard track to follow, I agree.

      1. Okay, I couldn’t reply earlier because I had a stupid tiny keyboard and was in an inappropriate place. Now I have a regular size keyboard and moment.
        I do actually like “Into Your Arms” after but, but, nowww that you’ve called attention to it, it is a bit of a switch between tones that doesn’t fit together great. The second half the album seems out of order to me and so many times I’ve reordered them on mixes. I wonder who picked the arrangement.
        I use to have an acquaintance/frenemy person who would include Pete Yorn on her list of musicians & bands she liked back around ’01 when everybody would fill out surveys and forward them to each other or post them on Livejournal. I’ve always remembered that for some reason but I don’t actually remember him being played by her, or perhaps I didn’t know and didn’t recognize it. I wonder what I would’ve thought if I’d heard his music back then. At least I’m being introduced to it now.

      2. I love the song Into Your Arms, but it just doesn’t fit for me after GBN, and I completely agree re: the second half of the album. I’m so curious how you re-organize it! Do you have a list you can share?

        My late husband actually introduced me to PY’s music. He bought his first album and then handed it to me and said “you’ll love this guy”. That was in ’01 and I’ve been a fan ever since – he was very right.

        I’m glad I could introduce you.

        Ah, livejournal…I miss it there sometimes.

      3. I don’t think I have a list on hand but I’m sure you or I could whip one up.
        I think what I miss from the livejournal days is: the feeling of a community which could include almost every person I hung out with at the time and “online” other livejournalers who were not at all snobs but just there to be in that same community, the sense of everyone being interested in each other, the discoveries, the place the vent that felt intimate but less on display and impulsive than other forms of social media and…I don’t know what else.

      4. I miss that people communicated/commented/shared, that it was almost always a comfortable place (I remember very little/if any drama, or mean spirited issues), that it felt like a community and much more personal than the limits of say 140 characters (Twitter) or the encouragement to just “like” something (Facebook) versus actually saying something.

        I was on livejournal for years and enjoy going back, sometimes, and re-reading entries. I do miss it.

        Yes, I’m sure we could whip something up…

      5. It’s strange how suddenly people dropped of the face of livejournal too. It was all about AIM, Myspace and Livejournal and then totally changed but I don’t even remember Facebook or feature phones being the interruption right at that time. I don’t know what happened.

      6. It was like a sudden extinction, a group exodus, or something – but there wasn’t a suitable substitute really, or an improvement. Just a more fragmented, less personal alternative. You know?

        I love WordPress. I do. But people rarely comment or communicate – sometimes I think you and I are an endangered species in that regard.

      7. I either deleted mine, I had a couple of them, or can’t remember the old email & password for the life of me. But, I use to browse them sometimes too. It’s a little time capsule.

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